Thursday, June 6, 2013

"Hey George, What Happened to Your Eyebrows?": Last NC Signal Message in the War

From the Encyclopedia of North Carolina.

Not one of your really big stories of the war, but one that I find of great interest.

Lt. George C. Round of the U.S. Signal Corps sent the last signal message of the war in North Carolina from Raleigh.  He was one of the first federal occupation troops to arrive in the state capital on April 13, 1865, and he established his signal station atop the state capitol building.

When he received news of Confederate General Johnston's surrender to General Sherman at the Bennett House in Durham on April 26th, he received permission  to proclaim the news using signal rockets.  He had spelled out the word "PEACE" and then lit a rocket indicationg the end of the word.

When it failed to go off, Round went back to relight it and when he bent over, it went off in his face and singed his eyebrows and eyelashes off.  After an extended pause, he continued with his message which finally read, "Peace on Earth, goodwill to men."

Just One of Those Little Stories.  --Old Secesh

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